Community movements and corporate images: "Landcare" in Australia

Lockie, Stewart (2009) Community movements and corporate images: "Landcare" in Australia. Rural Sociology, 64 (2). pp. 219-233.

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Abstract

Australia's National Landcare Program is popularly seen as a successful attempt to address rural land degradation in a cooperative and coordinated manner. Involving everyone from community Landcare groups to the corporate sector and government agencies, "landcare" is seen to have become something bigger than the program that spawned it. In lieu of convincing evidence that Landcare has transformed agricultural practices in a demonstrably sustainable direction, this high level of involvement is itself cited as a measure of success. Such a view, however, pays little attention to competing conceptualization's of what "landcare" actually means, to the power relationships between those involved, or to the multitude of other social projects in which those involved are engaged. The failure to address these issues masks the extent to which Landcare both contributes to the further intensification of farming practices, and is used as a signifier of environmental and social responsibility in the greening of the corporate images of its sponsors. By sponsoring Landcare initiatives companies gain licensed access to use of the Landcare Australia logo and may position themselves as responsible corporate citizens, irrespective of the environmental effects of their own products and manufacturing processes. A form of "green consumerism" is thereby constituted through which consumption is directed not towards the products of farmers attempting to produce more sustainably, but towards the companies that ostensibly support their efforts to do so.

Item ID: 34856
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
ISSN: 1549-0831
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2014 05:44
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1608 Sociology > 160801 Applied Sociology, Program Evaluation and Social Impact Assessment @ 50%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1608 Sociology > 160804 Rural Sociology @ 20%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1608 Sociology > 160802 Environmental Sociology @ 30%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960504 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Farmland, Arable Cropland and Permanent Cropland Environments @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9607 Environmental Policy, Legislation and Standards > 960704 Land Stewardship @ 50%
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